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Lynn Meskell

Lynn Meskell

Affiliated Faculty
Professor, Department of Anthropology

https://anthropology.stanford.edu/people/lynn-meskell

Lynn Meskell is Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Stanford University, former Director of the Stanford Archaeology Center, and Honorary Professor at the Rock Art Research Institute in the School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She is the founding editor of the Journal of Social Archaeology. She has broad theoretical interests from socio-politics and ethics to feminist theory and embodiment. Currently she is conducting an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Meskell’s previous fieldwork examined natural and cultural heritage in South Africa, the archaeology of figurines and burial in Neolithic Turkey and social life in New Kingdom Egypt. Over the past twenty years she has been awarded grants and fellowships including those from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Australian Research Council, the American Academy in Rome, the School of American Research, Oxford University and Cambridge University. Some of her recent books and edited collections include The Nature of Culture: The New South Africa (2011, Blackwells) and Global Heritage: A Reader (2015, Blackwells). Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her new book A Future in Ruins: UNESCO, World Heritage, and the Dream of Peace with OUP New York, describes UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.